Tuesday, October 27, 2015

1) RETIRED POLICE GENERAL PROTECTS ILLEGAL MINING OPERATION IN DEGEUWO


2) Jokowi, human rights and  the US
3) ANYTHING FOR GOLD IN
4) YAHUKIMO POLICE ACCUSED OF TORTURING TWO KNPB MEMBERS
5) Despite Military Crackdown in Papua & Other Rights Abuses, Obama Hosts Indonesian President in D.C.

6) Melanesia festival to strengthen melanesian countries` cooperation

7) Only Local Investors to Get a Slice of Freeport Indonesia IPO, Bourse Chief Says

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1) RETIRED POLICE GENERAL PROTECTS ILLEGAL MINING OPERATION IN DEGEUWO



                                                    Ilegal mining area in Degeuwo river – Jubi


Jayapura, Jubi – Paniai Regional Customary Council, John NR Gobai, said one of mining companies operated along the Degeuwo River, Paniai Regency, namely PT. Madinah Qurrata’ain, has appointed retired Police Inspector General RT as its chief executive.
The local people found out about it after a report said a police general who had been allowing the company to continue its operation employed a number of Mobile Brigade personnel of Papua Police.
“In Degeuwo, a retired police officer, a former Inspector General has been came up, while he was known involving with humanity issue. In our record, he held many important positions in the Indonesian Police Headquarters, including as the Coordinator of the Social Economy Experts of the former Indonesian Police Chief, General (retired) Sutarman in 2013,” Gobai told Jubi on Sunday (25/10/2015).
For that reason, he asked the Papua Police Chief Inspector General Paulus Waterpauw to immediately withdraw the Mobile Brigade personnel who guard around the illegal mining area located in the customary territorial of three tribes, Wolani, Mee and Moni. “The Police officers and Mobile Brigade personnel were actors behind the shooting incident over Melianus Kegepe, Mathias Tenouye and Selpius Kegepe. The bullets were belong to Brimob,” he said.
He further said the Papua entrepreneurs and traders would ready to lead the gold companies in Papua, such as PT. Salomo Mining. While PT. Madinah also less contribute to the local government and indigenous people in providing economic benefit.
“A good resolution for Degeuwo is the Paniai Local Government coordinates with the Papua Provincial Government to determine the people’s mining area as proposed some times ago. The Papua Governor has approved that WPR could accommodate the entire group as well as to assure all interest. Then, the People Mining Permit (IPR) would be issued on behalf of the land tenure owner to ensure the indigenous people to become the landowner or permit holder. So the mining workers work under the supervision of indigenous people and LPMA SWAMEMO would become their coach,” he said.
The Chairman of LPMA SWAMEMO (Walane, Mee and Moni Community Development Institution), Thobias Bagubau said LPMA will collect the aspiration of people living surrounded the illegal mining area along the Degeuwo River, Paniai Regency. The socialization to collect the people’s aspiration was held on 21 – 30 September 2015 in the illegal mining areas, from block 45, 81, 99, Baya Biru to Gunung Botak.
“At that time we held a meeting with the indigenous people involving the tribes of Wolani, Mee and Moni and other tribes such as Dani, Sengir Talaud, Buton and Makassar to listen their testimonies,” Thobias Bagubai told Jubi in Abepura, Jayapura City on Thursday (22/10/2015). On that occasion, Bagubau said, he revealed his vision and mission in order to maintain or protect the environment, community and to reduce the conflict in there. (Abeth You/rom)
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2) Jokowi, human rights and  the US
Stanley Harsha, Jakarta | Opinion | Tue, October 27 2015, 4:21 PM - 




When President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo meets with US President Barack Obama this week in Washington, DC, the two “people’s presidents” might talk about all they have in common, including loving to eat bakso (meatball). 

Both were elected to bring about more social justice and equality to countries where the gap between rich and poor is widening and the suffering of common people is worsening. Both are under pressure from nationalist conservatives promoting discrimination and xenophobia for opportunistic political purposes. 

In the US, Obama is faced by conservatives who are creating discord with anti-Muslim and racist rhetoric. In Indonesia, powerful elites who want Indonesia to return to Suharto era authoritarianism are gaining ground. 

I first met Jokowi in 2007 when he was mayor of Solo, and recognized that he was a new type of leader — honest, effective and compassionate. His transformation of Solo into a vibrant, caring city catapulted him to president. A year ago, I celebrated his election amid hundreds of thousands of ecstatic Indonesians at the National Monument, believing that his “mental revolution” platform would transform Indonesia’s corrupt, venal rule into a fair society. 

During his campaign, Jokowi promised to prioritize investigation and reconciliation of past human rights abuses. On the first anniversary of his presidency, Indonesian human rights defenders are dismayed. The respected human rights NGO KontraS stated last week that Jokowi had taken no concrete steps in pursuing past human rights abuses. Meanwhile, he has appointed to senior positions current and former generals, some of whom human rights groups allege have a record of human rights abuses and whose reactionary rhetoric is ominous for continued democratic reform. 

KontraS concluded that the Jokowi government is heading towards a deteriorating human rights environment. Human rights activists conclude that the issue of human rights was never high on Jokowi’s agenda but rather he prioritizes quick fixes for the economy and infrastructure. Some believe he is relying on tough generals to efficiently address problems and bolster his political strength against powerful enemies. Many say he is listening too much to politicians and not enough to the people. 

According to KontraS, the list of human rights setbacks this year is long, including rising religious discrimination and attacks on churches, regressing backwards on security sector reform, torture (mainly by police), unjust application of the death penalty and unwarranted police violence against demonstrators, such as the teenagers who were killed in Papua for peacefully demonstrating.

Another chilling human rights transgression is attack on freedom of expression, the pillar that upholds Indonesia’s democratic reform process. A controversy rages over police suppression of activities related to the massacre of 500,000 people in 1965, known as G30S. As one respected scholar explained, the G30S bloodletting was directed almost entirely against innocent citizens across Indonesia in a sadistic fashion, by Muslim youth gangs and militia backed by the army. 

As with all past (and current) human rights violations in Indonesia, there is no justice and probably never will be. All that is ever sought by the people is truth and reconciliation, a simple apology. 

Instead, police are attacking those who would simply discuss 1965, shutting down such discussions in universities and at the Ubud Writers & Readers Festival (UWRF), where authors were to discuss several excellent books on this topic and where Joshua Oppenheimer’s acclaimed films were to be screened. This suppression is ostensibly out of concern of a threat of communism. 

However, these actions are harmful to Indonesia in far reaching ways that I hope Jokowi can understand. 

Truth and reconciliation is needed for national healing. Furthermore, the world simply cannot forgive and forget such horrible atrocities. Also, the type of atrocities that occurred in 1965 has been repeated often since (Tanjung Priok, East Timor, May 1998 riots, etc.) and even after democracy. For example, human rights champion, Munir, was assassinated in 2004 in a case where justice might never be found. Truth and reconciliation, if not accountability, is needed to prevent such crimes in the future.

Finally, as Jokowi seeks to bring home nearly US$20 billion in US investment during this week’s visit, human rights violations such as suppression of freedom of speech are horrible for the Indonesian economy. The UWRF is a type of event that raises Indonesia’s positive profile, attracting tourists and investors.

Moreover, investors do not want to come to a country where rule of law is not respected. Now is the time for Jokowi to tout Indonesia as a tolerant, free democracy, not deal with messy distractions. 

The current climate reminds me a little of when I first set foot in Indonesia in 1986. Soeharto was bringing paved roads and electricity to every village. However, this rising prosperity masked his brutal treatment of his people and everyone was afraid to voice dissent. 

I am not implying that Indonesia will revert to Soeharto era oppression. Indonesian freedom, tolerance and democracy are too big to fail. However, as one prominent Indonesian journalist stated this week, “We are already suffocating.”
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The writer is former US diplomat who has lived in Indonesia for the better part of the past 30 years. His new book, “Like the Moon and the Sun”, is being featured at the Ubud Writers and Readers Festival in Bali this week.



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3) ANYTHING FOR GOLD IN
Jayapura, Jubi – Papua legislator Laurenzus Kadepa criticized a number of mining companies operating in Papua for using any means to extract dredge the natural resources of Papua.
He said he was not only talking about PT. Freeport Indonesia, but also gold mining activities in Degeuwo people’s mining area, Paniai Regency.
According to him, one of companies operated in Degeuwo people’s mining areas, PT. Madinah Qurrata’ain, has appointed Rudiard Tampubolon, a retired Inspector General policeman as its CEO.
He said he was worried that activities by the company would give bad impact to the local community.
“For the sake of gold, the capitalist companies in Papua join hands with the Military/Police and neglect the aspect of humanity. I am afraid there would cause the civilians as victims. It’s enough if until now the civilians were sacrificed for the interest of investors, certain groups or parties,” Kadepa told Jubi by phone on Monday (26/10/2015).
He said during the time there are a lot of trouble happened on people’s mining area in Degeuwo. And often many lives were taken for many reasons. Kadepa do not want this condition is continuing to happen. He expected the relevant stakeholder could take measures and solutions about the existence of this mining area.
“It is often the shooting incidents over civilians were occurred along to Degeuwo River areas by security forces. Particular culprits supplied the alcohol drinks to the mining areas. It’s not enough; they also brought the sex workers. The gold was taken away and gave HIV-AIDS. That’s what was happening out there,” he said.
Meanwhile, the Paniai Customary Council Chief, John NR Gobay, quoted by suarapapua.com said those companies are now openly holding the security forces, even they hired the Mobile Brigade personnel to guard companies’ office and mining areas. While Gobay further said the Mobile Brigade personnel have shot the civilian surrounding the people’s mining area for several times. (Arjuna Pademme/rom)




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4) YAHUKIMO POLICE ACCUSED OF TORTURING TWO KNPB MEMBERS


Jayapura, Jubi – West Papua National Committee (KNPB) accused the Yahukimo Police of physically abusing two of its members, Adembo Kobak (24 years) and Yanus Giban (27 years), on 25 October.
“The two victims are members of KNPB Yahukimo Region. Currently they are hospitalized at the Emergency Room, Yahukimo Public Hospital under the Police’s guard,” Ones Suhuniap, the Secretary General of Central KNPB said in the official release on Monday 925/10/2015).
Suhuniap said the incident occurred in Paradiso, Yahukimo at 10:20 Papua time when both asked approximately twenty people, including seven police officers, who were on cockfight gambling to stop.
“Andemo Kobak and Yanus Giban came to ask the police officers and mobile brigade personnel along with 13 residents who were cockfighting to stop because the scene is near the housing block of indigenous Papua. It would give bad influence to the people if they watched it, moreover it was Sunday,” stated Suhuniap in the release.
He further said instead of negotiating or leaving the gambling arena, the culprits (Police and Mobile Brigade personnel) yelled at and beat them. “They were severely beaten up,” said an informant from Yahukimo.
The Chairman of Yahukimo’s Regional Parliament (PRD Yahukimo), Aminus Balingga, confirmed about the incident. He told the victims are currently in critical condition and undergoing medical treatment at Yahukimo Public Hospital in Dekai. “Both are now under treatment and one of them is still in critical condition,” he said.
Yahukimo Police Chief Adjunct Police Commissionaire Ade Jaja Subagja confirmed to Jubi denying his officers were involved in that incident but the Mobile Brigade personnel. He did it after being attacked by residents at first. “Not Police officers, but Mobile Brigade personnel. Drunken residents who brought the log and bayonet triggered it. The Yahukimo Police has tackled this case. The situation is now safe and secured,” the Yahukimo Police Chief texted to Jubi on Monday (26/10/2015). (Mawel Benny/rom)

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5) Despite Military Crackdown in Papua & Other Rights Abuses, Obama Hosts Indonesian President in D.C.
OCTOBER 27, 2015
STORY
VIDEO
On Monday, President Obama met Indonesia’s new president, Joko Widodo, at the White House to discuss climate change, trade and strengthening U.S.-Indonesian ties. President Obama described Indonesia as one of the world’s largest democracies, but human rights groups paint a different story, citing the military’s ongoing repression in West Papua as well as discriminatory laws restricting the rights of religious minorities and women. Indonesia has also been criticized for attempting to silence any discussion about the 50th anniversary of the 1965 Indonesian genocide that left more than 1 million people dead. We speak to John Sifton of Human Rights Watch and journalist Allan Nairn, who has covered Indonesia for decades.

TRANSCRIPT

This is a rush transcript. Copy may not be in its final form.
AMY GOODMAN: We begin today’s show looking at Indonesia, the world’s fourth largest country. On Monday, President Obama met at the White House with Indonesia’s new president, Joko Widodo, who is also known as Jokowi, to discuss climate change, trade and strengthening U.S.-Indonesian ties.
PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA: Our partnership is very much in the interests of the United States, given Indonesia’s large population, its leadership in the region, its democratic traditions, the fact that it is a large Muslim country with a tradition of tolerance and moderation, and its role in trade and commerce and economic development.
AMY GOODMAN: During his visit to the White House, Indonesian President Jokowi announced Indonesia intends to join the TPP, the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade deal the United States has forged with 11 other nations.
PRESIDENT JOKO WIDODO: [translated] Indonesia is an open economy. And with the 250 million population, we are the largest economy in Southeast Asia. And Indonesia intends to join the TPP.
AMY GOODMAN: Indonesian President Jokowi was planning to head next to the West Coast but has decided to cut his U.S. trip short due to raging fires that have resulted in haze and toxic fumes covering much of Indonesia, as well as parts of Malaysia and Singapore—many of the fires illegally set in order to clear land for palm oil and paper plantations. The fires have been described as one of the biggest environmental crimes of the 21st century. According to the World Resource Institute, since September the fires have generated more carbon emissions than the entire U.S. economy.
Meanwhile, Indonesia’s human rights record is also coming under criticism. On Monday, President Obama described Indonesia as one of the world’s largest democracies, but human rights groups paint a different story, citing the military’s ongoing repression in West Papua as well as discriminatory laws restricting the rights of religious minorities and women. Indonesia has also been criticized for attempting to silence any discussion about the 50th anniversary of the 1965 Indonesian genocide that left more than a million people dead. Last week, Indonesia’s largest writers festival, the Ubud Writers & Readers Festival, was forced to cancel a series of events tied to the anniversary of the massacre, including a screening of Joshua Oppenheimer’s documentary, The Look of Silence.
To talk more about Indonesia, we’re joined by two guests. In Washington, John Sifton is with us, Asia advocacy director of Human Rights Watch. His new book is titled Violence All Around. Allan Nairn is also with us, journalist and activist who’s been reporting on Indonesia for decades. He’s joining us from Guatemala City.
We welcome you both to Democracy Now! John Sifton, in this meeting that Jokowi is having, the Indonesian president is having, with President Obama, can you talk about the issues you feel President Obama needs to raise with the Indonesian president?
JOHN SIFTON: Well, it’s too late now, and President Obama already used the clichéd term of Indonesia as a tolerant Muslim democracy. We had hoped he would have talked about how Indonesia is going astray. It’s losing some of its tolerant qualities and principles, and starting to give too much power to Sunni extremist groups, which want to basically make Indonesia a place that’s unfriendly to Shia, to Christians, to Baha’i, to secularists and to women.
AMY GOODMAN: You consulted with the State Department, is that right, on this visit? What did you tell them?
JOHN SIFTON: Of course. Whenever there’s a world visit, you know, we talk to the State Department and to the White House. And in this instance, we said, "Please avoid this cliché." Unfortunately, President Obama didn’t. But did he raise issues of human rights behind the scenes in his bilateral meetings with President Jokowi? I’d like to hope so. He has expressed interest in the Papua issue in the east, a very problematic situation in the east which has been going on for years. In the past he’s raised that issue, and I would have hoped he would do so again.
But really, the more existential threat to Indonesia right now is this growing religious intolerance toward Sunnis—I mean, excuse me, toward Shia, towards Christians, towards others who are not Sunni extremists. It’s not really, you know, part of the Indonesian society, but there are fringe groups which are pushing this agenda and have exercised the heckler’s veto.
The worst problem, though, is the onerous new restrictions that are being placed on women at the local level, all kinds of little laws restricting their movements at night, making sure they have to wear a hijab, wear skirts of a certain length, prohibiting them from riding motorcycles, or, rather, straddling motorcycles—they can sit sideways, but not forwards. These little laws have a cumulative impact that are incredibly derogatory and discriminatory towards women and girls.
AMY GOODMAN: Allan Nairn, can you talk about the significance of President Widodo’s visit to the United States? John Sifton just mentioned West Papua. And if you can place it, especially for viewers and listeners in the United States who may know very little about the Indonesian archipelago?
ALLAN NAIRN: West Papua is on the eastern end of the archipelago, and it’s legally, in the eyes of the U.N., considered part of Indonesia. But the Indonesian government—the army, the police, the intelligence—treat it as if it’s an occupied foreign land. They shoot demonstrators. They arrest anyone who speaks for independence or against the army, who raises a Papuan flag. A few years ago, I released a series of internal documents from Kopassus, the U.S.-trained special forces, which showed that they had a massive network of intelligence informants, modeled on that that Israel uses in the West Bank, and there’s this ongoing terror in Papua.
President Jokowi has indicated that he would like to pull back on a lot of this army and police and intel repression in Papua, but the security forces have resisted them—resisted him, and he has not been brave enough to overrule them. Obama could have, with one word, facilitated the pullout of the repression from Papua by saying that the U.S. would cut off all military aid unless they stop the terror in Papua. By doing that, he could have strengthened the hand of Jokowi and others in the government, because the government is divided on this, who want to rein in the army and the police. But apparently, Obama didn’t do that.
The U.S. has always maintained a separate channel to the army, from the days of the Suharto dictatorship, and even before, when the U.S. was trying to overthrow the founding president, Sukarno. And that strengthens the hand of the army—and the CIAworks with the police—against an elected civilian president like Jokowi. It previously happened with Gus Dur, who was a Muslim cleric, a reformist president, who was undermined and, in effect, ousted by the army. And one of the key sources of army power is the fact that they had their separate channel to Washington. In fact, as Jokowi was meeting with Obama, Ash Carter, the secretary of defense, was welcoming General Ryamizard, the defense minister of Indonesia, who is the chief ideologist in favor of killing civilians. He said, previously, that anyone who dislikes the army is a legitimate target for killing. Reacting to a massacre of civilians, of children, in Aceh a number of years ago, he joked about it and said, "Well, children can be dangerous, too."
In terms of the religious intolerance, there is indeed a trend toward religious intolerance in Indonesia, as there is in Europe and the United States in this moment since the 9/11 attack, and then the U.S. invasions of Afghanistan and Iraq had set in spiral a series of events. And the main backer, the main outside backer, of this religious intolerance in Indonesia is Saudi Arabia. They’re going into the local mosques, spreading around a great deal of money, pushing this intolerant ideology. And also, I’ve seen, just talking to people over the past couple years, that one of the main things that gives credibility to a lot of these Saudi-funded extremists who go around urging people to abandon the Indonesian tradition of tolerance is when they see in the news the news of the Obama drone attacks against various Muslim countries and things like the Israeli invasion of Gaza. If Jokowi had stood up and said privately and publicly to Obama, "The U.S. should stop this, the U.S. should stop arming Israel," that would have been consistent with a lot of the pro-Palestinian rhetoric, hypocritical rhetoric, that one sees from politicians inside Indonesia. And it also would have had real impact, because the U.S. always likes to claim that the moderate Muslim nations are with Washington. Indonesia is the largest Muslim nation in the world. Usually, when the U.S. says "moderate Muslim nations," they mean radical dictatorships like Saudi Arabia. Indonesia isn’t like that, though. Indonesia is a quasi-democracy like the United States, and if Jokowi had spoken out in that way, it would have had a huge impact.
Also, there are other major issues on the table between Jokowi and Obama, Indonesia and the U.S. One is Freeport-McMoRan, the massive mining corporation, based largely in West Papua, which extracts huge amounts of gold and copper. They pay bribes to the Indonesian army and officials to be able to do that. They spoil the rivers. Many of the rivers there turn colors never seen in nature. They cut off the mountains. And the local Papuan population surrounding the mines often live with hunger and lack of clean water. The Freeport contract is up for renewal. There’s a big battle going on within the Indonesian government as to whether it will be renewed or whether Indonesia will take over the mine itself, as it has the technical capacity to do. But the U.S. and Obama have been pushing Indonesia to, yes, extend this contract. The U.S. has for years backed the repression in Papua in large part because of Freeport. The previous leader of Freeport, Jim Bob Moffett, used to be a golfing partner of the dictator, Suharto. Accounting records leaked would show that Freeport was paying massive bribes to the Kopassus special forces to repress the local population. Last year, I interviewed a former senior Indonesian official who told me that he had received two personal checks from Freeport worth hundreds of thousands of U.S. dollars as bribes, although he said to me he didn’t cash the checks. This is a violation of local Indonesian law and also the U.S. Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, but neither the Indonesian or U.S. governments have dared to move against Freeport to try to stop this type of corruption. But this contract is on the table, and Indonesia could change things drastically by not renewing it, but Obama and the U.S. is twisting their arm to continue to give Freeport free rein in West Papua.

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6) Melanesia festival to strengthen melanesian countries` cooperation

Selasa, 27 Oktober 2015 20:34 WIB | 438 Views

Jakarta (ANTARA News) - Indonesia, for the first time, will be hosting the Melanesian Cultural Festival 2015 in Kupang, East Nusa Tenggara from October 26 to 30, which is aimed at improving cooperation among Melanesian countries.

"The festival is based on the reality that the majority of Melanesians are living in Indonesia, approximately 80 percent of them," the Director General of Culture at the Ministry of Education and Culture, Kacung Marijan said on last Thursday.  

The festival will draw participation from stakeholders, who are engaged in culture and arts in Indonesia, Fiji, Papua New Guinea, Solomon Islands, Timor Leste, Vanuatu and New Caledonia, as well as representatives from the Melanesian Spearhead Group, based in Vanuatu.

Indonesia will send its representatives from five provinces, which has a population of Melanesia, namely East Nusa Tenggara, Maluku, North Maluku, Papua and West Papua.

The festival will feature a conference and film screenings, as well as dance performances.

Three Indonesian films will be screened at the festival, which are "Atambua 39 C", "Tanah Mama" (Mother Land) and "Cahaya Dari Timur" (Light of the East).

Besides Indonesia, Fiji and New Caledonia will also send their movies to be screened to exchange knowledge, tradition and culture and to increase solidarity among the Melanesians.

Melanesia is a sub-race, which in Indonesia, has spread in East Nusa Tenggara, Maluku, North Maluku, Papua and West Papua.

Archaeologists from the National Archaeological Research Center, Harry Truman Simanjuntak, said the festival also aims to sensitize people against the two biggest races in Indonesia -- the Mongoloids and Austronesians, who are brothers and have been interacting culturally and biologically for tens of thousands of years.

“Do not create any dividers, we need to know each other to strengthen the national spirit," Harry said.
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7) Only Local Investors to Get a Slice of Freeport Indonesia IPO, Bourse Chief Says
By : Muhamad Edy Sofyan | on 9:52 PM October 27, 2015
Jakarta. The Indonesian stock exchange authority says it will restrict the market for a highly anticipated initial public offering of shares in mining giant Freeport Indonesia to local investors only.
US-based Freeport-McMoRan plans to divest an initial 10.6 percent stake in its Indonesian unit as part of a deal to allow it to extend its contract to operate the Grasberg copper and gold mine in Papua province beyond 2021.
The company, which controls a 90.64 percent stake in Freeport Indonesia, is expected to submit details about the planned divestment to the Indonesian government this month.
Indonesia Stock Exchange (IDX) director Tito Sulistio said on Tuesday that his office, along with the Financial Services Authority, was drafting a regulation prohibiting foreign investors from snapping up the Freeport Indonesia shares, in a bid to accommodate domestic investors.
“Foreign investors will be able to buy, but only after a couple of years,” he added.
Tito said he believed the plan would receive a positive response from the market and major domestic institutional investors like workers’ pension fund BPJS Ketenagakerjaan and civil servants’ pension fund Taspen, both state-owned.
Samsul Hidayat, Freeport Indonesia’s director for corporate evaluation, said he had met officials from the Energy and Mineral Resources Ministry to discuss the planned divestment, prescribed in a 2014 regulation.
The government owns a 9.36 percent stake in Freeport Indonesia; under the regulation, Freeport-McMoRan needs to divest a total of 20.64 to bring its own stake down to 70 percent.
No details have been given for the time frame for the divestment or the projected value of the shares.
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